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Wenzhouese woman doctor wins U.S. Woman Scientist Award
【Fonts: Large Medium Small 【Source: 温州市 【Date: 2017.09.20】

Recently, Dr. Zhang Shi, a Wenzhouese woman, successfully won Woman Scientist Award 2018 from the National Institute of Health (NIH),USA. As the only female Chinese among all winners this year, Zhang Shi may get tenure in the field of scientific research in theU.S.thanks to this award.

It is learned that in theU.S., tenure is generally referred to lifetime appointment granted to people like a professor in a university or a senior researcher at an institute. Established in 1993, Woman Scientist Award normally goes to 2 or 3 female researchers working at NIH, who are  selected by a panel of senior researchers from NIH, in recognition of their outstanding achievements in scientific research.

Zhang Shi, born in November, 1983, in a village called Di Ling Xia in Yaoxi   Street of Longwan District, graduated from Wenzhou Medical University in 2005 and then went to School of Medicine of Shanghai Jiaotong University (SHJTU) to pursue master and doctoral degrees. After graduating from SHJTU in 2010, she worked in the university for more than 2 years. In early 2013, she started her research work at NIT, now involved in the pathogenesis of Parkinson's disease at the lab of Neuroscience, National Institute on Aging, NIH.

Outstanding in academic achievements, Zhang Shi is the first doctor in the village  of Di Ling Xia and was once a woman of the hour in Longwan District. When talking about her past glory, Zhang Chongyuan, Zhang Shi’s father, was still very excited, although 12 years has gone by. As Zhang Chongyuan recalled, the news that Zhang Shi was admitted to the doctoral program was spread throughout the whole village almost overnight. "The second day after we received the notice, some villagers led their children to my home, saying that they would like to see the first Ph. D. student in the village and study from her."

Although her parents have no good educational background, Zhang Shi, as well as her two siblings, did well in study. Her twin brother Zhang Xian was self-employed in Wenzhou, engaging in electronic product development and design after graduating from Jilin University. Her younger sister, Zhang Yini, successfully became a civil servant at a government department in Wenzhou after graduating from Guizhou  University. "A few years ago, many neighbors often came over for the experience of rearing children", said Zhang Chongyuan proudly, "I think there is no secret, and the key is to give them the sense to study voluntarily. I am doing the cold work, and for many times, I cannot understand the drawings due to my poor education. So when they were very young, I kept telling them that only knowledge can change their fate.”

Compared to their father, their mother, Fang Yuchai, is more harsh to them in family education. In order to cultivate the habit of learning in them, she would read some poems to them even when they were still babies. Upon encountering words that the couple didn’t know, she would read to them in Wenzhou dialect. As soon as they have learned to count, Ms. Fang would take out the tape measure her husband uses, point to the figures above and teach her children one by one. When other children of the same age were still playing in the fields, 6-year-old Zhang Shi and her brother had already began school.

"We couldn’t be what we are today without mother’s education”, said Zhang Shi. Her mother placed high expectations and requirements on the children. Yet it is just her mother's strict requirements that urged Zhang Shi to persist and finally realize her dream.

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